Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) announced Thursday he will resign from Congress after an investigation was opened about his “discussion of surrogacy” with female staffers.
“I have recently learned that the Ethics Committee is reviewing an inquiry regarding my discussion of surrogacy with two previous female subordinates, making each feel uncomfortable,” Franks said in a statement. “I deeply regret that my discussion of this option and process in the workplace caused distress.”
In his statement, Franks, 60, denied ever having “physically intimidated, coerced, or had, or attempted to have, any sexual contact” with any members of his staff, CNN reported. Franks reportedly said he approached women in his office about surrogacy because he and his wife “long struggled with infertility” and went through three miscarriages.
Franks has been outspoken on conservative issues since being elected to Congress in 2002, and he authored several anti-abortion bills.
Rep. John Conyers (D-Mich.) announced Tuesday he would retire after several women said he sexually harassed them. Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn) said on Thursday he will resign following sexual misconduct allegations.
“We are in an unusual moment in history—there is collective focus on a very important problem of justice and sexual impropriety,” Franks said in his statement. “It is so important that we get this right for everyone, especially for victims.”
Update 2:38pm CT, Dec. 8: In a statement today, Franks said that due to a medical incident regarding his wife, he was moving his resignation date up to today.